Influenza vaccine does not combat COVID-19


Published: 2020-10-07 16:23

Last Updated: 2023-03-27 20:34

Influenza vaccine does not combat COVID-19
Influenza vaccine does not combat COVID-19

Doctors have stressed the importance of the seasonal influenza vaccine which coincides with the colder seasons, as well as the other infectious diseases that may occur during the winter.

Although COVID-19 and these viruses have similar symptoms, the vaccine provided has nothing to do with the coronavirus, despite it protecting the respiratory system from such influenza viruses. Total infection rates decrease by 60% due to the influenza vaccine.

The flu vaccine is safe and protects against infections, said the Head of the Vaccines Department at the Ministry of Health, Kamel Abusal.

Abusal added the vaccine will be given free of charge to health personal and high risk patients, which include; cancer, dialysis, weak immunity, chest disease and Thalassemia patients.

In addition, he called for raising awareness of the importance of giving the vaccine to the elderly, individuals with heart diseases, those who work in overcrowded places and pregnant women, as the vaccine is safe and does not affect pregnancies.

Vaccines are safe to be administered from ages six months and over, with the price varying according to the vaccine type. Trivalent flu vaccines will be priced approximately at JD five, Abusal added. 

The demand for the vaccine has not been obtained by the Ministry of Health as of yet due to global scarcity and increases in demand, however there are centers for monitoring the influenza which are located in the north, central and south areas of the Kingdom, he added.

The vaccine will reduce the burden of investigation in the midst of the epidemic as the flu has 90% similar symptoms as COVID-19, said the member of the National Committee for Epidemics, Bassam al-Hijjawi.

If an individual is infected with influenza and COVID-19, the treatment situation will be very difficult, al-Hijjawi added.

The influenza vaccine components differ annually as most influenza strains mutate and multiply as time progresses, making it essential to the the vaccine this year is it is comprehensive of these new mutations, said the Head of the Jordanian Society of Allergy and Immunology, Hani al-Ababneh.

In addition, al-Ababneh has warned to not resort to taking influenza vaccines from previous years as the components of the vaccine vary.

The vaccine must be taken from approved places such as health care institutions, pharmacies and clinics, noting that there is a possibility of contracting influenza in the first days of taking the vaccine, as its effectiveness begins two weeks after administration, al-Ababneh added.

However, al-Ababneh said that some individuals may develop reactions from the vaccine which may include fever and headaches. Children aged six months to eight years old should be taken to a doctor for assessment prior to vaccine administration as they may require two doses whereas adults only require one.